President Martin Torrijos Espino has decriminalised gay sex in Panama.

On 29th July, President Espino and Health Minister Rosario E. Turner signed a decree repealing a 1949 law that made gay sex an illegal offence that would incur a $500 (£266) fine or a prison sentence.

The decriminalisation came after protests from gay equality group New Men and Women of Panama, the San Fransisco Bay Times reports.

The ban on gay sex was found to be inconsistent with international human rights treaties that Panama has signed, as well as the Panamanian Constitution.

The law was also in conflict with the Health Ministry’s policy to ‘maintain respect for the sexual preferences of each person, without the existence of any type of discrimination’ in the administration of its sexually transmitted diseases programs.

Amnesty International states that there are currently 11 nations in Central America, South America and the Caribbean where homosexuality is illegal.

Those countries are Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Trinidad and Tobago.